One of the most experienced members of the 2013 squad, goalkeeper Mark McNulty was happy to extend his association with Cork City Football Club into an 11th year earlier this week.
The Ballincollig man first joined City in 2003, claiming the club’s number one shirt outright in 2010 and becoming an ever-present ever since. ‘Nults’ told CorkCityFC.ie that he was delighted to sign a new deal, revealing that the “great vibes” around the appointment of manager John Caulfield mean that he’s already raring to go for next season.
“Things are looking positive for the club with John back involved,” he said. “There are great vibes about the place, and I’m really looking forward to next season. I’ve often been involved with John while he was with Avondale and UCC – on the goalkeeping coaching side of things. He’s very positive, I think it’s a great appointment and, looking forward, I think there are big, big times ahead.”
McNulty has penned his new deal alongside two other 2013 stalwarts – Colin Healy and Garry Buckley. Healy, as a former Ireland international, brings formidable steel to the group, while McNulty had plenty of time to observe Buckley in action last season – the 20-year-old playing much of the campaign at centre half.
“Garry was only a young lad when he came in last year. He got his chance and, to be fair to him, he’s really made the best of it. There is a lot of talk around the League of the younger players coming through at Cork City at the moment, and Garry is very much one of them.
“I think it’s a great decision for both parties. Garry will continue to build himself up and show what he can do. There’s no doubt he can play at a higher level in England but I’m delighted that he’s here for at least another season. He’s a good pro and a great fellah to have around the club.”
On the new faces recently added to Caulfield’s playing group, McNulty had only good things to say. “Darren (Murphy) and Anthony (Elding) are two big signings. Darren was here before, of course, and did well. He was unlucky with injury, and getting somebody like him back is a great signing. Anthony got plenty of goals for Sligo last year and if he can come in and do the same job for us this year, there’s no doubt we’ll be pushing for Europe and maybe one of the Cups.”
City boss Caulfield has been busy early on during the off season and the signings have helped build momentum for the new man, according to City’s number one. “When I hear the signings that we have coming in, and having spoken to John a few times now, I just get more and more excited.
“We’re back in early January, and I’m already counting down the days being honest. At the end of the season you’re always happy to get a break but once you’ve had that, it’s all about getting back into it again. Hopefully we’ll have a good pre-season and start the season well; if we do that, there’s every hope we can claim a few honours by the end of the season.”